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October 30, 2012

NYC Marathon...maybe...

After Hurricane Sandy, Manhattan and the other 4 boroughs have some bad timing. It's marathon week in New York City.  Planning and preparation was going on and I'm sure the NYC Marathon will go off without a hitch...except mass transportation (Read: SUBWAYS, which are down currently).

Take a look at how things are looking the day after Sandy.  Still, people in Wisconsin are optimistic about how New York will handle the adversity.  Yes, you read correctly: Wisconsin.  Then again, the folks at the Wall Street Journal, are using the same AP article.  That is hopeful, I suppose.  Stay positive. As the AP article states, "...if flooding or other damage affects the course or logistics, NYRR has contingency plans every year to adjust to any potential problems."

Also, with the race ending in Central Park, it passes within a block of the now infamous 57th Street Crane. NYC Mayor, Michael Bloomberg said last night, 57th St. between 6th and 7th Ave. were evacuated. Miles 25-26 are within a block or so of that area (albeit, they're in the park).  Kind of scary!  Where is our friendly, neighborhood Spiderman on this one?

See the course map. And review the storm damage and its impact on the race courtesy of the New York Times.  Finally, here's the Times' coverage of all things marathon related.

View more videos at:
As the race crosses the Queensboro Bridge into Manhattan, it crosses over Roosevelt Island. Here's what that looked like, yesterday. Here's how things were on the Queensboro Bridge (Courtesy of the WSJ): Here's the home stretch, leading from Harlem 116th into Central Park:

Best of luck to all that are running.

May the odds be ever in your favor!

*Update: 2:20 PM, 10/30/12-An astute colleague noted, without the airports up & running, much of the field won't be able to arrive. Unless flights are detoured/rerouted to Albany, Westchester, or Bradley (Hartford), which are all possibilities, the field could be slim.
*Sidenote-A friend is flying from Florida, and was set to return today. His flight was delayed to Friday as of this past weekend.
*Update: 6:46 AM, 10/31/ has an article posted entitled Crippled Subways Could Hamper NYC Recovery, covering the issue of mass transit. "Mayor Michael Bloomberg guessed it could take four days for train service to resume. And even then it was unclear how much of the nation's largest public transit system would be operational," according to the article.
*Update: 6:00 AM, 11/2/2012-The NY Post went after event organizers today. Not really sure how justified this article is, considering the resources were privately purchased by the NYRR, and that they'll pay for anything they need. The Post and Daily News are not what I would consider reputable. Meanwhile, NYRR president, Mary, "Wittenberg explained how the marathon course, itself, had been spared by the savage storm, how NYRR would use private security and transportation to release the strain on city services which would be needed for storm relief, and announced the institution of a marathon Race to Recovery Fund with an initial contribution by the NYRR, the Rudin Family, and sponsor ING to the tune of $2.6 million."

*Update: 5:32 PM, 11/2/2012-After declaring it would be good for New York to hold something that lifts the spirits like a marathon, Bloomberg has backed out of his previous statement that the race would happen. Instead, it is officially cancelled
"We would not want a cloud to hang over the race or its participants, and so we have decided to cancel it," the mayor said in a statement. "We cannot allow a controversy over an athletic event — even one as meaningful as this — to distract attention away from all the critically important work that is being done to recover from the storm and get our city back on track."
Bloomberg called the marathon an "integral part of New York City's life for 40 years" and "an event tens of thousands of New Yorkers participate in and millions more watch."
He still insisted that holding the race would not require diverting resources from the recovery effort, but understood the level of friction."
*Sidenote-To me, this is just his way of saying that the vocal minority of people who called for the marathon will get their way.  Why? Because they had access to the media. Mike Francesa has made a big deal about this. Stephen A. Smith has made a big deal about this. Local news in CT has made a big deal about this. What none of them understood was, you can't POSTPONE the race, it had to be cancelled. The race could have been run, or it could not be run. Either way, I'm still not so sure this is the right choice, but ANY decision is going to be viewed as wrong. It was a lose, lose situation.  In this case, EVERYONE lost. The problem is, a marathon is not something that can just be postponed. They're lucky they can pull it off once a year in the 5 boroughs. I think if they pulled it off, it would have been a tremendous testament to the willpower of the city and all New Yorkers.

*Final Update: 8:28 PM, 11/3/2012-Things are settling down a little. There are sad stories on both sides. Again, it was a lose-lose situation, and everyone lost. That being said, I think that this article, by runner Toni Reavis, looks at all this whole unfortunate mess and puts into full perspective. It's the most complete telling of this debacle I have yet to read.  I encourage you to read it, as well. Reavis has done a MUCH better job following this whole situation over the past few days. Read the blog. Trust me. It's way better than this.


Brandt Schneider October 30, 2012 at 1:36 PM  

They have to get airports up and running first.

C October 30, 2012 at 2:24 PM  


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